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Solar plane circles globe in first for clean energy

ABU DHABI A solar-powered aircraft successfully completed the first fuel-free flight around the world on Tuesday, returning to Abu Dhabi after an epic 16-month voyage that demonstrated the potential of renewable energy.The plane, Solar Impulse 2, touched down in the United Arab Emirates capital at 0005 GMT (0405 local time) on Tuesday.It first took off from Abu Dhabi on March 9, 2015, beginning a journey of about 40,000 km (24,500 miles) and nearly 500 hours of flying time.Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg, the Swiss founders of the project, took turns piloting the aircraft, which has a wingspan larger than a Boeing 747 but weighs no more than an average family car."More than an achievement in the history of aviation, Solar Impulse has made history in energy," Piccard, who piloted the plane on the last leg, told a large crowd on landing. "I’m sure that within the next 10 years we’ll see electric airplanes carrying 50 passengers on short- to medium-haul flights," he said in a statement.He said the technologies used on Solar Impulse 2 could be used on the ground in daily life to halve emissions of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas blamed for climate change.The propeller-driven aircraft's four engines are powered by energy collected from more than 17,000 solar cells built in the wings. Excess energy is stored in batteries. Unfavorable weather at times hindered smooth flying, causing the plane to be grounded for months in some countries. In all, the plane had 16 stopovers.The pilots also had to demonstrate the mental stamina required to tackle vast distances alone at a cruising speed of no more than 90 km (56 miles) per hour and altitudes of up to 9,000 meters (29,500 feet)."We were facing the oceans... We had to build up this mindset, not just the plane and technology," Piccard told reporters. For the two pilots, landing back where they started is only "the beginning of the continuation" of a longer journey, said Piccard, who in 1999 became the first person to circumnavigate the globe non-stop in a hot air balloon.Aside from continuing to promote renewable energy, they plan to launch an international council to advise governments and develop new applications for clean energy technology. (Reporting by Stanley Carvalho, editing by Sami Aboudi and John Stonestreet)

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Yahoo reports lackluster results as sale looms

Yahoo Inc's (YHOO.O) quarterly earnings fell short of Wall Street expectations on Monday in what may be the company's last financial report before it sells its core business.Yahoo reported adjusted earnings of 9 cents per share, short of the 10 cents that analysts expected. It also announced a $482 million write-down on the value of Tumblr, the social media service that it acquired in 2013 for $1.1 billion.Total revenue rose to $1.31 billion from $1.24 billion a year earlier, though that seeming improvement was the result of a change in the way the cost of acquiring traffic is counted. After deducting fees paid to partner websites for traffic, revenue fell to $841.2 million from $1.04 billion.Revenue in the company's emerging businesses, which Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer calls Mavens - mobile, video, native and social advertising - showed some life, rising 25.7 percent to $504 million in the second quarter ended June 30.Gross search revenue for the quarter was $765 million, a 17 percent decrease from the same period last year. The company posted a net loss of $439.9 million, or 46 cents per share, compared with a loss of $21.6 million, or 2 cents per share, a year earlier. "If search continues to decline as much as it has that's something that's going to be called into question," said JMP Securities analyst Ronald Josey.Yahoo is in the process of auctioning off its search and advertising business and is expected to choose a winner this week. The company said its board has made "great progress on strategic alternatives" but did not comment further on the auction process. Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N) and AT&T Inc (T.N) are said to be in the running, as well as private equity firm TPG Capital and a consortium lead by Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert and backed by billionaire Warren Buffett.Yahoo's fortunes have waned under Chief Executive Marissa Mayer, who has made little progress in her attempts to gain ground against newer, bigger Internet players such Facebook Inc (FB.O) and Alphabet Inc's (GOOGL.O) Google. The tepid progress in turning around the business attracted pressure from activist investors who pushed Yahoo to launch an auction of its core business in February. Yahoo has also said it could spin off the business.Yahoo's shares were little changed at $37.92 in trading after the bell. (Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty, Jonathan Weber and Chris Reese)

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Split and Clone Editor Views in Eclipse

Sometimes it is all about knowing the simple tricks in Eclipse which make life easier. Like this one: How to have a split editor view so I can edit multiple different sections of a source file.That feature is present in Eclipse Luna and afterwards, but because there is no icon in the view itself as in Microsoft Word, I have found that many do not know about this useful feature. The screensthots below are for Eclipse Luna.Split Editor ViewTo split an editor view, I have it selected (to be active), then I use the menu ‘Toggle Split Editor’:I can split it horizontal:Or in a vertical way:I can use the mouse to resize the split area:To remove the split, simply use the menu or shortcut again:Clone Editor ViewThe other useful function is to clone an Editor view:This creates a clone of that view:To ‘undo’ the cloning, I close the new editor view.SummarySplitting and Cloning gives me a way to edit the same source file in different portions of that file. The commands to Clone and Split is under the Window > Editor menu.Happy Cloning and Splitting!

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Israel's high tech boom threatened by shallow labor pool

TEL AVIV In the high tech hub of Tel Aviv, where companies have been responsible for ground-breaking advances like the USB stick, Or Offer never thought it would be hard to find workers for his fast-growing Internet data firm SimilarWeb.But an alarming lack of engineers, technicians and even doctors, which is jeopardizing Israel's place among the world's technological elite, sent him looking abroad."There's a brutal fight over skilled employees," said Offer, whose company has quadrupled in size in the past two years, hiring over 200 new people.To boost the technical side of the business that analyzes website data, he set up a development center in Ukraine.Without the huge populations of emerging markets like India or the vast network of foreigners who call Silicon Valley home, Israel's high tech enterprise seems to have dried out the well.Over the next decade it will face a shortage of about 10,000 engineers and programmers in a market that currently employs 140,000, according to the country's chief scientist, Avi Hasson, who is the government's point man on sustaining innovation."The issue of skilled and available manpower is the main barrier to growth and competitiveness in the field of high tech," Hasson said.The industry, which sprouted from an advanced military and flourished with state backing, became a major growth engine and investment magnet for Israel.Multinationals like Apple, Intel and Google have been eager to snap up local start-ups and set up research centers. High-tech goods and services now account for 12.5 percent of Israel's gross domestic product and half its industrial exports.Younger firms are noticing the skills problem as they compete for workers with the global giants operating in Israel."There are a lot of international players around, coming in with deep pockets. Facebook, Google and others can make offers 50 percent above market and equity packages that are very lucrative," said Nir Zohar, president of website-designer Wix.com, which is known for its big-budget Super Bowl ads. "It's becoming harder and harder with the amount of effort you need to put in to recruit." HUMAN CAPITALSince taking office in 2013, Bank of Israel Governor Karnit Flug has been sounding the alarm over the threat to Israel's pool of "human capital".An aging population, lagging education and poor integration of Israel's Arab and ultra-Orthodox Jewish minorities in the labor market is making the workforce less effective, she said in a May speech. Combined, Israeli Arabs and ultra-Orthodox Jews make up about 30 percent of the population.Nearly half the country's doctors, for example, are 55 or older — the highest figure in the Western world — while the rate of students completing medical school is among the lowest.University graduates in maths and computer science fell to 1,600 in 2008 from 3,000 in 2005. The figure has recovered, but not returned to prior levels. Israel is ranked 17 among the 34 members of the OECD in the ease of finding skilled workers. Tech companies prospered for years by tapping into the skills of workers trained in the military or intelligence sectors and start-ups benefiting from tax breaks and government funding. But those are drying up.Two years ago Israel lost the top spot it held for more than a decade among the OECD when it comes to investment in research and development, mainly due to a steep drop in government investment. South Korea is now top of the tree.Ultra-Orthodox Jews and Arabs rarely serve in the military and are marginalized from the high tech industry. The government is now implementing a number of programmers to include them, like improving language skills and special training.VISAS Feeling the heat, firms have been fighting to bring in qualified foreigners to ease the stress."In Israel, to get a work permit is harder than to make peace," said Eldad Tamir, head of the Tamir Fishman Investment House and a partner in Eucalyptus Growth Capital, a fund that invests in high tech companies.Tamir's partner in Eucalyptus, David Perlmutter, former chief product officer at Intel, lamented that Israel imports labor for agriculture and construction but not for technology."If you look at other countries that want to develop, they bring in workers. All of Silicon Valley is based on that. Here it doesn’t happen," he said.Nearly 75 percent of computer and math workers aged 25-44 employed in California's Silicon Valley are foreign-born, according to the Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies.In the 1990s, the influx of one million immigrants from the former Soviet Union helped fuel Israel's high-tech boom. Today about 30,000 people arrive annually, but it is not enough to meet the demands of the growing industry."Israel was built in a very homogenous way in terms of our innovation ecosystem. We did import talent, but only Jewish talent," and that needs to change, said Hasson.Only an "anecdotal" number of foreign high tech workers are being brought in today, Hasson said, referring to a smattering of cases like the U.S.-born CEO of TowerJazz who over the past decade helped turn around the ailing chipmaker.He said Israel would soon begin a pilot for issuing a few hundred work visas a year, but it's unlikely to be enough. (Editing by Luke Baker and Dominic Evans)

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Google beats children's web privacy appeal, Viacom to face one claim

Google and Viacom on Monday defeated an appeal in a nationwide class action lawsuit by parents who claimed the companies illegally tracked the online activity of children under the age of 13 who watched videos and played video games on Nickelodeon's website.By a 3-0 vote, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia said Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc, and Viacom Inc were not liable under several federal and state laws for planting "cookies" on boys' and girls' computers, to gather data that advertisers could use to send targeted ads.The court also revived one state law privacy claim against Viacom, claiming that it promised on the Nick.com website not to collect children's personal information, but did so anyway.Monday's decision largely upheld a January 2015 ruling by U.S. District Judge Stanley Chesler in Newark, New Jersey. It returned the surviving claim to him.Jay Barnes, a lawyer for the parents, declined to comment.Viacom spokesman Jeremy Zweig said the company is pleased with the dismissals and confident it will prevail on the remaining claim. "Nickelodeon is proud of its record on children's privacy issues and strongly committed to the best practices in the industry," he added. Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment.Monday's decision is a fresh setback for computer users, after the same appeals court last November 10 said Google was not liable under federal privacy laws for bypassing cookie blockers on Apple Inc's Safari browser and Microsoft Corp's Internet Explorer browser.Circuit Judge Julio Fuentes, who wrote both decisions, said that ruling doomed many of the parents' claims against Mountain View, California-based Google and New York-based Viacom. He also rejected the parents' claims under the Video Privacy Protection Act, a 1988 law adopted a year after a newspaper wrote about movies rented by failed Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork, based on a list provided by a video store.Fuentes said the law was meant to thwart the collection of data to help monitor people's video-watching behavior.He said Congress, despite amending the law in 2013, never updated it to cover the collection of data such as users' IP addresses, browser settings and operating settings, and reflect a "contemporary understanding" of Internet privacy. "Some disclosures predicated on new technology, such as the dissemination of precise GPS coordinates or customer ID numbers, may suffice," Fuentes wrote. "But others--including the kinds of disclosures described by the plaintiffs here--are simply too far afield from the circumstances that motivated the act's passage to trigger liability."The revived privacy claim accused Viacom of reneging on a promise on Nick.com that said: "HEY GROWN-UPS: We don't collect ANY personal information about your kids. Which means we couldn't share it even if we wanted to!"Fuentes said a reasonable jury might find Viacom liable for "intrusion upon seclusion" if it found its alleged privacy intrusion "highly offensive to the ordinary reasonable man."The case is In re: Nickelodeon Consumer Privacy Litigation, 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, No. 15-1441. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by David Gregorio; Editing by David Gregorio)

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